Oct 28 2009 by Ian Bunting, Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser
FIFTY pupils from Caldervale High gathered on World Teachers’ Day to launch the Make Your Mark Challenge in Scotland.
The students, who were winners of the event, Britain’s largest one-day enterprise competition, in 2007 and 2008, formed the chemical symbol of carbon dioxide (CO2).
This reflected the theme of this year’s challenge ‘Don’t be a Carbon Copy’ and encouraged other schools within Scotland to enter the competition.
The Make Your Mark Challenge will take place on the first day of Global Entrepreneurship Week (November 16 to 22). It is designed to encourage students in schools and colleges to consider the environmental implications when developing green business ideas.
The competition is free to enter and offers teachers a fun and rewarding way to engage pupils in an enterprising way.
Adele MacKenzie, home economics teacher at Caldervale High, along with fellow staff member Margo Curran, has been the teacher behind the school’s winning entries for the last two years.
She said: “Being well prepared is essential for pupils to have a chance of winning the Make Your Mark Challenge.
“The secret to success is engaging the pupils; so although we help prepare them, the idea must really be something they have thought about and created themselves.”
For the last couple of years Caldervale has run a Make Your Mark Club. Adele said: “Within this setting we are able to teach and support pupils on how to go about researching, costing up and testing an idea.
“In the first year of Make Your Mark we set the pupils a mock challenge, in order to get them prepared for the real thing.
“This test run gave them the opportunity to designate specific roles to team members and get them to think in an enterprising way.”
Make Your Mark spokesperson Hannah Bourne added: “The notion of carbon foot printing is fast becoming part of people’s subconscious due to Government efforts to increase awareness amongst businesses and the general public of environmental issues and the need for us to cut emissions.
“We wanted to use this hot topic to get students and pupils’ creative juices flowing and challenge them to come up with a green business idea.”
Each entry will be judged by Determined to Succeed and the best entries in each category will be invited to participate in a Scottish final on November 26, where each team will be required to present their idea, along with competitor and financial information, to a panel of judges in a Dragons’ Den style.
The overall winner of each category will represent Scotland in a UK final in London in December.